PROGRESS UPDATE NO. 2 – “You can have results or excuses – not both.”

Standard

I just had my third body composition testing to see how far I’ve come in the last 4 weeks. This test marks the end of week 10. I’m starting to get tests closer together now so that if something isn’t working, we can change it. Going into this test I was feeling pretty deflated. I’ve been on the second phase of training for 4 weeks now and didn’t feel like I had changed. The only real changes I had noticed were a bit more size in my upper body and legs. If I had to guess, I would have thought my body fat percentage had gone up.

However the results of the test surprised me! The most exciting part is that I gained 2kg of lean muscle mass in the space of 4 weeks! The goal of this phase of training is moreso about building muscle than it is about losing fat. The weights are heavier and the reps lower. Being naturally small it is a fight for me to build muscle, so I couldn’t be happier that the training is working.  I also dropped 0.2% body fat during this phase. Although this isn’t huge, it’s good if I can still maintain my body fat level or lose a bit of fat as I build muscle, so losing 0.2% to bring me to 16% overall is a good result.  My coach was happy with this too. He is confident he will be able to get me lean easily and the most important thing is holding on to muscle mass.

I honestly thought my coach was going to ask me what the hell I’d been doing and why I hadn’t got any results this time around! I just didn’t feel different. This goes to show I need to have faith in the process – my body was responding the way it was supposed to, I just couldn’t see it. I know if I follow my coach’s instructions to a tee, I should get the results I’m after.

Dealing with setbacks 

The major set back I had this last week was coming down with a cold, losing my appetite and only really being able to stomach fresh fruit and veggies. I rarely get sick but I ran myself down after functioning on little sleep, working full time and maintaining my intensity of training. Having a cold made me crave sweet foods for a pick me up – mainly fresh fruits and soothing cold drinks for my sore throat. I prefer to rely on natural medicines when I get sick – like eating more vitamin c through oranges, carrots and berries, and taking manuka honey and green tea in order to remedy a cold. But unfortunately these things all contain sugar, which is not technically part of my comp prep diet. However I chose to put my health first and include more fresh fruit and manuka honey to try and kick the cold so I can get back into my training fast. I do believe in listening to my body, and wanted to give it the best chance to recover quickly. I’m feeling better for it and only had to take one extra rest day this week as a result.

Where to now… 

I’ve worked out that I’m sitting 18 weeks out from comp, and I’ve already been dieting for 10 weeks. I’ve still got so far to go, and it’s difficult to maintain motivation when your goal is not really in sight. I had a chat to my coach and he thinks I’ll need 12 weeks for my strict comp prep. So instead of dieting for 26 weeks in a row without a break (which would be the longest comp prep ever and not sustainable!), I’m going to get a week of ‘flexible dieting’ starting on November 30th. Essentially this is a week off from my diet so I can enjoy meals out a bit more. I won’t go completely nuts, but it will be nice to enjoy health foods like fruit smoothies, raw treats and protein bars that are not really part of my comp prep diet. I will still stick to my training regime during this time. I don’t find adhering to the training difficult, but dieting is very time consuming and can get a bit boring. It will be nice to have more variety in my foods for a week before knuckling down. Now that I have a date set for this in the foreseeable future, it should be easier to maintain discipline with something to look forward to in just 3 weeks time. 🙂

I’m looking forward to the last week on this phase of training. The goal is to keep gaining muscle mass while maintaining a low level of body fat! Bring on the gains! 😛

With love,
B. xx

Advertisements

“A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step”

Standard

11th September 2014

Since starting to lift heavy and work hard in the gym about two years ago, I’ve seen some amazing results. I am physically stronger, I feel more confident, and I generally feel healthier.

However for the past year I have ogled over fitness models and their incredible, lean and muscular physiques. This week I met with my new trainer who, after some research, I decided would be apt to help me achieve my goal of competing in my first INBA competition as a fitness model. I’m aiming to compete in March 2015. I’ve given myself plenty of time, because although I’m an experienced gym-junkie, I’m new to this kind of training and restrictive lifestyle. It will take time to play around with what works for my body and what will get me in optimal physical condition to take the stage.
We started off with some biosignature testing to see the current state my body is in. I was happily surprised to find I had a starting body fat percentage of 18% – considerably lower than what I was expecting. The goal is between 8 and 12% to take the stage, so I have still got a long way to go, but it’s not a bad starting point.

This screening process also identified the main problem areas and functional issues in my body. For instance, we discovered:

  • the effect of my inability to sleep on fat storage
  • the presence of toxins in my body that I expose my body to on a daily basis through my beauty routine (surprisingly, girls on average expose themselves to thousands of chemicals per day in their use of cosmetics alone – a scary thought)
  • the inability of my body to effectively remove toxins

I have slowly been making the switch to organic beauty products for a while, but this has encouraged me to step that up a notch, and also try to wear make up less often. I’ve also been put on (entirely clean) supplements in order to decrease my stress levels and help me get achieve a deeper sleep. So far, I am waking up only once a night when I used to wake up 3-5 times, and it is certainly having a positive impact on my productivity throughout the day! I don’t feel so lethargic during the day anymore. I’ve also gone on a fibre cleanse in order to help remove toxins (15g of high fibre supplement morning and night).

You have to go back to basics and get your body functioning right in order to form the right base for the training load that will ultimately get you in your peak physical condition! I’m feeling great so far and really looking forward to what’s to come! 🙂

With love,
B. xx